The debit cards will link to customer accounts on the FTX exchange, and will enable them to spend the digital currency they have on the platform as if it were an ordinary bank account.
An article on CNBC quotes Visa CFO Vasant Prabhu in an interview who stated that there is still a lot of interest in crypto:
“Even though values have come down there’s still steady interest in crypto. We don’t have a position as a company on what the value of cryptocurrency should be, or whether it’s a good thing in the long run — as long as people have things they want to buy, we want to facilitate it.”
Both Visa and its big competitor Mastercard have been forging relationships with crypto companies such as FTX. Visa has more than 70 crypto partnerships. Besides FTX it has also partnered with the likes of fellow exchange giants Coinbase and Binance.
Mastercard has also partnered with Coinbase, and also with Bakkt, in order to allow the banks and merchants in its network to offer crypto services.
Sam Bankman-Fried was also quoted in the CNBC article. He believes that there is an “irony” in banks and other traditional financial organisations having links with crypto companies. He spoke of the crypto technology being embraced by these institutions:
“It’s a technology that we absolutely see disrupting traditional payment networks. There’s a decision you have to make as a traditional payments company: do you want to lean into this or do you want to fight against it? I respect the fact that many of them are leaning into it.”
Bankman-Fried also spoke about the crypto technology opportunities for emerging markets:
“Many of these things like are potentially cool and valuable in the United States but more so when you look globally. That’s where you’ll find places with really poor alternatives for payment rails and huge demand for something better.”
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